When you’re a baker who blogs (about baking), everything in life turns into an excuse to bake. And I’m not just talking about birthdays, anniversaries, family reunions, Sunday dinners and such.
Your sister randomly says in conversation she loves apple pie. Upon realization that you have never made one, you make her come over the next weekend to try your first ever attempt complete with her favorite vanilla ice cream. (After this, she now “randomly” said she likes a bunch of other things. Hi sister!)
You get your hands on a coupon for free chocolate and despite the fact you have said like, um, 1000 times you don’t like chocolate, you take it as a sign from God that chocolate chip cookies need to come out of your oven in the near future.
You bake cookies the night before a vacation because, well, sightseeing will make you hungry and you don’t want to be over charged for snacks because you’re a tourist who doesn’t know better.
My latest excuse – My good friend is home recovering from surgery and even though she has never been one to express being crazy over dessert, I just had to bring something sweet to go along with the fixings for the dinner I was making her. Lucky for me (and her) she really enjoyed this Maple Walnut Pie. It’s really simple and straight forward but pretty awesome, if I must say so myself. I made it with a homemade crust, cuz that’s how I roll these days. But you can certainly make it with a store bought one. One step you will not want to skip in this recipe is the toasting of the walnuts. It takes this pie to all new levels of deliciousness.
As I typed this post, I realized this is quite similar to these divine Maple Walnut Muffins I made recently and in the same family as this Chocolate Bourbon Pecan Pie that got so many lovely comments from you all. But this pie here certainly stands on its own and one that all of you should try…pronto!
Maple Walnut Pie
1 1/2 cups chopped walnuts
1 9-inch prepared pie crust, do not pre-bake/blind bake
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/4 cup heavy cream
3/4 cup pure maple syrup
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
1 tablespoon bourbon
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
Place a rack on the bottom third half of your oven and preheat to 375 degrees. Spread the walnuts on a baking sheet and bake for 7-10 minutes until they are evenly toasted and fragrant. Transfer them to a bowl and let them cool. Wipe down the baking sheet.
Spread the walnuts evenly on the bottom of the pie crust and place the crust on the baking sheet. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, brown sugar, cream, maple syrup, bourbon, flour and salt, making sure to break up the clumps of brown sugar and everything is evenly incorporated. Pour this mixture over the nuts in the pie crust.
Bake the pie until the crust is golden brown and the filling is just firm and puffed, about 40 minutes. Check the pie a few times during baking and if the crust is getting too dark, cover it with a piece of foil.
Let the pie cool completely before cutting. Note that in the cooling process, it will sink a bit.